The Void in your Heart (The Story of the Woman at the Well)

Woman at the WellAre you looking for fulfillment?  Do you have a deep void in your heart?  Are you longing for something more but you don’t know what you could do to satisfy it?  Have you tried tirelessly to fill it with money, entertainment, food, clothes, sex, relationships, drugs etc?  Do you have a deep sense of emptiness that won’t go away?   We were all made with a void in our heart.

Did you know we were born with an innate hunger for God?  Nothing and no one in this world can fill this emptiness, except for God.  God is the only one who can satisfy your heart.  Only God can supply what our souls deeply desire. We cannot live without God because we were created to enjoy what only He provides.

There is an interesting story of a Samaritan woman in the book of John 4:1-38.  This woman lived in the city of Sychar in Samaria.  The Samaritans were Jacob’s descendants who had intermarried with people from the north following the Assyrian Captivity of Israel in 721 b.c.   The Samaritans were considered outcasts and were hated by the Jews. When the Jews barred the Samaritans from the temple, the Samaritans built their own temple on Mount Gerizim. Even though they believed in the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Old Testament – Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy), they changed the stories.  For example, they believed the Garden of Eden was on Mount Gerizim (not true) and Noah’s ark landed on Mount Gerizim (not true – the ark landed on the mountains of Ararat, Genesis 8:4), and etc.

To give you a little background about this woman, she was immoral.  She had five husbands and the man with whom she lived wasn’t one of them.  She was committing adultery.  But God had a plan for this woman to meet Jesus and find in Him the water of life.

The woman went to the well for water at the time when Jesus was passing through the city on His way to Galilee. Since it was midday and at the sixth hour, she knew no other women would be at the well at that time.  Also because of the lifestyle she was following, she did not want to talk to them. John 4:7, A woman of Samaria came to draw water….”

When the woman met Jesus at the well, He had a conversation with her.  John 4:7-8, “… Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” 8 For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.”

Culturally, Jews and Samaritans did not associate with each other. The fact that the disciples were “gone away into the city” buying the Samaritans’ food also reveals Jesus’ total rejection of the Jewish prejudice which considered Samaritan food unclean.  And for Jesus, a rabbi, to speak to a woman in public was surprising to her.

As of now, the woman thought nothing beyond Jesus as being but a thirsty Jew.

The woman responded saying, John 4:9,How is it that You, being a Jew, ask a drink from me, a Samaritan woman?” For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.”

Jesus avoided the woman’s reply.  He was skillful and sympathetic, yet persuasive and factual.  He appealed to her curiosity.  Gradually Jesus moved the conversation from the water one might draw from the well to a spiritual water.  He created an interest here in John 4:10,…If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” Jesus told her she was ignorant of two things: the gift of God, which was salvation, and the identity of the Savior in her presence.

Even though Jesus spoke of living water, the woman took this to mean literal water. The woman said to Jesus in John 4:11-12, “…Sir, You have nothing to draw with, and the well is deep. Where then do You get that living water? 12 Are You greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank from it himself, as well as his sons and his livestock?”

Jesus points out to her that the things of the world do not satisfy, and people without Christ will always “thirst again.”  Jesus promises that the water of life will spring up within the heart and keep us constantly refreshed and satisfied in John 4:13, “Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, 14 but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

Even though the woman was confused, she said in John 4:15, “The woman said to Him, “Sir, give me this water, that I may not thirst, nor come here to draw

Jesus told her to find her “husband” in John 4:16, “Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.”  and demonstrated a supernatural knowledge of her personal life in John 4:18, “You have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband”

Now at this time, the woman had to confront her sins.  Jesus’ statement, “Go, call your husband!” was for the purpose of forcing her to face her own sin.  No person can ever be saved who hides his sins. Jesus pointed out that the important thing is knowing the Father, and this can be done only through salvation. He has now brought her face-to-face with her sins, her desire for satisfaction, and the emptiness of her own religious faith.

This woman clearly understood Jesus must be a prophet John 4:19,The woman said to Him, “Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet.”  Then she immediately asked a theological question, for who could better settle a debate between the Jews and Samaritans than a prophet?  John 4:20, “Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where one ought to worship.

John 4:21-24, Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

When Jesus identified Himself as the Savior of the world, all her defenses crumbled.  The woman knew she was a sinner in need of salvation. John 4:25-26, “The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When He comes, He will tell us all things.”  26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”

The woman proved her faith by giving public testimony to the people in the town (and they certainly knew her character); and they too came to trust Him.

Jesus gave her the unconditional acceptance and love that we all ache for.  What the woman may have sought in promiscuous sex she found through faith in Jesus. And so can we today.

Jesus showed us a great lesson in witnessing to a person – He met this woman in a friendly way and did not force her into a decision. Wisely, He guided the conversation and allowed the Word to take effect in her heart.

God set eternity in the heart of every man and womanEcclesiastes 3:11“He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end.

Receiving Christ

Jesus is the Living Water. Jesus is the water that brings life to the soul. By drinking the living water one can live and never thirst again. Are you willing to follow Christ?  He invites you to come to Him, to come in total surrender.

Romans 10:9-10 – “… if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”  12  For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him;  13  for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

 


Helpful Scripture

Scripture stresses the emptiness of human life without God, and notes that Jesus Christ chose to empty himself in order to redeem humanity.  Below is scripture which I hope will be helpful for you.

1 Samuel 16:7 – “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”  God Knows your Inner Heart

Romans 8:6, “If our minds are ruled by our desires, we will die.  But if our minds are ruled by the Spirit, we will have life and peace.”

Ezekiel 36:26, “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”

Psalm 42:5-6, “Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul?  Why are you crying the blues?  Fix my eyes on God-soon.  I’ll be praising again.  He puts a smile on my face.  He’s my God.”

 

Emptiness as the result of sin

  • Micah 6:13-14;
  • Leviticus 26:14-16;
  • Psalm 78:32-33;
  • Hosea 4:10;
  • Haggai 1:7-9

God wants to remove the emptiness of people’s lives

  • 1 Peter 1:18;
  • Psalm 81:10;
  • John 1:16; 10:10;
  • Ephesians 4:13;
  • Colossians 2:10

Jesus Christ accepts emptiness in order to redeem humanity

  • Philippians 2:7;
  • 2 Corinthians 8:9

Emptiness as a symbol of judgment

  • Jeremiah 4:23

Human life can be empty

  • Ruth 1:21;
  • Ecclesiastes 1:2; 3:19; 12:8

Human attempts at fulfillment are empty – Work does not satisfy

  • Isaiah 55:2;
  • Psalm 127:1-2;
  • Ecclesiastes 2:17; 6:7;
  • Haggai 1:5-6

Pleasure does not last

  • Job 20:5;
  • Proverbs 21:17;
  • Ecclesiastes 2:1-3,25

Wealth does not satisfy

  • Ecclesiastes 5:10;
  • Ecclesiastes 4:7-8;
  • Luke 12:15;
  • 1 Timothy 6:9-10

Material possessions are unreliable

  • Luke 12:18-20
  • Job 8:13-15; 15:31;
  • Psalm 49:10,12,16-17;
  • Proverbs 11:4;
  • Ecclesiastes 5:15;
  • 1 Timothy 6:7

False religion cannot save

  • Isaiah 57:13;
  • Judges 10:14;
  • Isaiah 44:17-18; 45:20; 46:7;
  • Jeremiah 11:12;
  • Acts 14:15
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